How to choose the best regions for foreigners to live in Brazil?

The number of migrants is gradually growing in the country. According to the Annual Report of the International Migration Observatory, 774.2 thousand foreigners were registered between 2010 and 2018 in Brazil. Many of them have the objective of working for large companies located in the country and wish to establish themselves in the best places to live when they have this choice.

On the other hand, the institutions that hire these professionals often have branches spread across several Brazilian states and, therefore, face the difficult task of knowing the best place to allocate them.

This article is designed to help managers in this process. For this, we will give suggestions of cities in Brazil that can fit into different profiles. That way, the company will have happier employees at work. Check out the best regions for foreigners!

What are the best places to live?

It is not always possible for migrant professionals to choose the ideal city to work when they come to Brazil. However, when this opportunity exists, finding the ideal place that meets your needs depends on the union of several factors.

Therefore, we are going to make a list of Brazilian capitals with their main characteristics and present the nationalities that land the most in them.


The capital of Pará had a very strong French influence in its formation and, for this reason, many old buildings were inspired by this culture.

In addition, the city is full of natural beauty and has a very strong gastronomic appeal with typical dishes from the region, which are highly appreciated by visitors. Apart from these attributes, the metropolis has another attraction: its modernity.

In the city center, there are many new constructions, mainly business buildings, showing their growth potential. The large companies that have established in the region further encourage the local economy.

If a migrant wants to live in a city that mixes history, nature and modernity, Belém has a great chance of being very pleasing.


The city of Recife is considered the cradle of innovation centers and the largest technology hub in Brazil. The capital of Pernambuco is home to the Porto Digital Technological Park — also known as the Brazilian Silicon Valley.

Due to this powerful innovative center, foreigners who live in this city get excellent job opportunities, as many multinational companies, such as Microsoft, Samsung, HP and IBM, have offices there.

Furthermore, Recife has excellent faculties, such as the Federal University of Pernambuco (UFPE) and the University of Pernambuco (UPE), which encourage education in the city.

Recife also offers beautiful beaches to foreigners, such as Boa Viagem and Coroa do Avião, and other tourist attractions. This city is definitely on the list of the best regions for migrants.

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Porto Alegre

When we turned our attention to the southern region of the country, we soon came across the famous city of Porto Alegre, which always attracts many professionals from abroad. This happens for many reasons: one of them is TECNOPUC (Technological Park of the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul). There, important companies such as Petrobras, Telebrás, Stefanini and TOTVS employ many workers.

Yet another advantage of this region are the two renowned universities it has: the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS) and the State University of Rio Grande do Sul (UERGS).

Porto Alegre’s climate is another attraction for foreigners who come mainly from colder countries, as temperatures reach almost 0 degrees in winter and, in the warmer months, an average of 30 degrees. For having a pleasant climate and being safe, this city is among the best regions for foreigners to live

Rio de Janeiro

This beautiful and famous city on the Brazilian coast draws the attention of professionals from all over the planet. Therefore, it is not possible to suggest a specific nationality of workers that stands out from the others that go to that location.

For a foreigner to adapt to Rio de Janeiro, it will depend a lot on their preferences. Something that may not be pleasing is the intense heat, especially for those who come from countries with low temperatures all year round, such as Canada, Iceland and Russia.

On the other hand, foreigners will like the business structure that the city offers. As it is one of the main capitals of the country, several multinationals have their Brazilian headquarters in Rio de Janeiro. Therefore, large corporate events always take place in the city.

Despite being very busy, it provides contact with natural beauty and encourages the practice of sports and a healthier life. Another aspect that delights those coming from abroad is the friendliness of the cariocas, which makes foreigners feel at home in no time.

Therefore, Rio de Janeiro can be the ideal place for migrants interested in sports, easy to deal with people and willing to live in big cities, but ones that are surrounded by natural beauty.

São Paulo

The São Paulo megalopolis follows the same trend as Rio de Janeiro, enchanting people from all over the world. And it’s not by chance: the city is full of large corporations, has a good transport infrastructure, excellent real estate developments with homes to live in and a lively nightlife.

Generally, younger and more dynamic professionals, as well as those who are workaholics, adapt well to the São Paulo lifestyle. Ease of access to renowned universities as the University of São Paulo (USP) may please foreigners looking for a postgraduate, master’s, doctorate, among other courses.

Due to the large number of companies, the city hosts major annual corporate events, giving foreigners the opportunity to interact with professionals from around the world and increase their network of relationships.

But it is not just work that the resident of São Paulo lives. On weekends, many head to the coast of São Paulo or inland in search of destinations close to the city to relax.


The Federal District is the center of political power in the country and, therefore, has an exemplary infrastructure among Brazilian cities. Starting with its gateway: the airport — considered the second largest in the country.

Foreigners find it extremely easy to get international and national flights. This factor is very important for those who need to travel a lot between the company’s various branches throughout Brazil. Or, that they frequently visit their home country.

Another advantage that may be pleasing is the city’s organization. As Brasília was well designed, the streets are easy to navigate and it is not difficult to find your way around the city.

How to choose the best region?

The important thing at this point is to guide migrants to analyze their routine, lifestyle, customs and their entire context. By identifying this information, we can more accurately assess places and thus hit the nail on the head when moving.

When evaluating the items below, the possibility of migrants feeling more connected with the place of their new home and having a good cultural experience, bringing a feeling of comfort and influencing their productivity at work, is increasing.

Check out our tips on how foreigners can be more assertive when choosing their new home.

Evaluate the cost of living

How much are these professionals spending to maintain their lifestyle? They must review the proposals considering their cost of living. After all, income directly influences the migrant’s choices. If they are living on a more limited budget, it might be a good option to advise a more economical capital to live in.

Therefore, don’t forget to help them assess their spending on food, leisure and entertainment. In this way, it is possible to imagine situations in different cities and then decide which option is most in line with their style.

Not taking the personal budget into account when accepting a change of city can cause a big problem, both for the professional and for the company, as the earnings may not match the expenses, and even affect the emotional stability of the employee due to of debt or lack of money. Therefore, one of the roles of managers is to guide the employee to avoid situations of this type.

Research about security

Is the city in which the migrant is thinking of living safe? We are currently connected to different networks through technology and thanks to this connection, we can have access to crucial information.

To find out the city’s security index, it is possible to search and find the cases reported in the news, as well as access infographics. An example is the Bairro a Bairro Crime by the newspaper Estadão, which illustrates crime data in São Paulo according to data from the State Secretariat of Public Security.

In addition, for greater specifics, there is the report Atlas of Violence – Portraits of Brazilian Municipalities, prepared by the Institute for Applied Economic Research (IPEA).

Another tip is that migrants themselves can also look for groups of residents on social networks, following their daily lives through publications.

Discover the opportunities

Foreign professionals often arrive with a well-defined place of residence. However, if migrants are going to Brazil looking for a job, does the chosen region have job openings for their area? Some Brazilian capitals tend to focus on specific sectors, more than other regions. If you are an HR consultancy focused on foreign professionals, for example, here it is worth advising them on the chosen region and checking whether their profession is in high demand, as well as recent vacancies. Choosing the right place, which has many opportunities, is essential for these people.

How important is a good infrastructure?

In addition to all the aspects we’ve seen before, foreigners need to pay attention to local infrastructure. How is the infrastructure of the chosen Brazilian city? Some cities like São Paulo and Recife have excellent infrastructure in many neighborhoods. It’s worth checking if they’re looking for a more inviting place.

Managers should inform them about local public transport, health facilities and nearby facilities. These are some factors that make all the difference and raise the level of the regions. In this way, foreigners will be sure that they have made the right choice to live and work in Brazil.

With a little research and a good knowledge of the profile of foreign professionals, it is possible to choose a place for them to live that will help them to be more productive in the company. Brasília, São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro are frequently the destinations chosen by foreigners and are always on the list of best regions for foreigners. One of them can be a sure choice for your collaborator.

Did you like this article? Did it help you to know which are the best places to live and thus help foreign professionals? So share this information on social media and get in touch with us anytime!


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Especialista em Global Mobility